Prior to joining the Legislature, I was a lawyer for over 13 years, with a primary emphasis in business disputes. I still work as a lawyer since I left the Legislature for the last six years. Of course, while in the Legislature, I served on the Senate and Assembly Judiciary Committees, given my experience in the law and litigation.
Why is that important? Because during my time as a lawyer, I had more than one client weave conspiracy theories about what was going on in their cases. My response always was: What is the evidence? What can we prove? What documents or witnesses do you have? Of course, there are two types of evidence admissible in a court action, direct evidence and circumstantial. Both are of equal weight in a court action. Direct evidence can best be described as Jack sees John shoot Ted. Jack’s testimony about what he saw is direct evidence. Circumstantial evidence is Jack hears a gunshot, runs into the room, and see John standing over a dead Ted, holding a smoking gun. It is this type of circumstantial evidence that always leads people to look “for the smoking gun” in any conspiracy type claims. It also leads those who don’t believe in the conspiracy to claim that the “evidence” of the conspiracy is “only circumstantial.” That, of course, doesn’t matter, circumstantial evidence is enough to convict someone in a court of law.
There is growing circumstantial evidence of a movement, within government, to take guns away from law abiding citizens. I read this week about the efforts of the Democrats, once again, to ban “assault weapons”…. again. Since these weapons, which are really just mean looking rifles, are already banned, one wonders what else the Democrats could do except include more innocent looking guns in the ban. Their rationale for this is the shooting in Aurora, Colorado. But wait, could there be more to this story?
I read that the criminal in Aurora received a government grant to do medical research. He then used the money to buy the weapons. I guess someone in government wanted to know what guns would do if someone took them into a publicly advertised “gun free zone” like the theater, and started shooting people. I also read that this guy’s psychiatrist used to work for the Pentagon. A government grant to buy weapons? And a government employee for a psychiatrist?
I would have dismissed these facts as the rantings of conspiracy lunatics, except we know that the Justice Department was specifically arming drug dealers and terrorists in Mexico with American weapons through the Fast and Furious program, a program that looked suspiciously like an attempt to conjure up the rationale for banning more guns. Now we see a criminal with a government grant and a government psychiatrist shooting up a theater as the basis for the latest weapon ban? Hmmm…
Another piece of evidence, someone else also “coincidentally” in the city of Aurora, CO, armed with similar weapons tried to shoot up a church there a few months ago. That guy only killed one person, because the church was not a gun free zone, and one of the churchgoers with a gun at the church shot the criminal dead before he could do any more damage. Did that guy have the same psychiatrist, and a government grant, too? We don’t know, because it wasn’t big headlines nationwide when that shooting happened since a law abiding citizen with his own gun was present to protect the other churchgoers from a potential scenario like what had happened at the theater. I wonder what could’ve happened in the theater scenario if a law-abiding citizen with their own registered gun would’ve been present to use it in self defense while the shooting happened? Perhaps it would’ve saved the lives of so many that were lost that day unnecessarily.
I realize it doesn’t take much for my Democrat colleagues to move to ban guns. It would be disturbing, however, if the justification for that ban was coming from people in government with an anti-gun agenda, who are willing to sacrifice citizens to obtain their political objectives. They failed in Fast and Furious. They failed in the first Aurora shooting. Was the second Aurora shooting their success? I don’t know, but there is at least a level of circumstantial evidence to justify such a conclusion, evidence which, should it be presented in a court of law, just might convince a jury.
There are, by some estimates, 30 million hunters, with guns, in this country who have never hurt anyone, intentionally or by accident. We have no reason to fear gun owners. We do have reason to fear a government, however, that would take away the rights of its people to protect themselves from criminals who would still get guns, no matter what the laws are, especially if the pretext for the anti-gun laws is based on actions the government itself has undertaken. Gun owners defend freedom, and protect their neighbors, and they are not the criminals who kill people with guns. Gun owners should not be treated like those criminals.